Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Eliminating Judgment?

I need to keep adding to what I love in Lessons in Becoming Myself.

As I pointed out earlier, one thing I really love about this book is that she sees life as a continuous journey to learn. I absolutely believe that myself. It's actually pretty relieving to hear someone else say it. We are constantly learning through the smallest, and largest, of events that randomly circumvent their ways into our lives.

From the book:

"J.W. Dunne says the brain is a machine for the education of the soul. And that our experiences are what lay down the tracks in the brain with which to teach our soul. To me, experience is both a teacher for the soul and a tool to use in teaching others" (298).

100% correct.

Additionally, she hears Dr. Elahi speak, professing about good teachers and how we learn. He says that if one is interested in learning from life, give up five things: "smoking (anything), tea, pork, alcohol, and judging." Weird list of things, eh? Do you see why some of them are on there? Some are more difficult than others.

But, do you think it's really that easy to give up judging? I'd like to think of myself as a good and gracious person, but I really can't see it being too easy. I wish I judged less (especially myself), but that's not as easy as baking a cake right out of the box. That needs work and determination, some discipline and drive.

How can you not judge people who intentionally harm or hurt others, even you or people you know?

Ellen Burstyn writes, in response to a similar question to this: "It is not our job to judge each other because we don't have all the facts or information about the person's karma. They act out their own destiny and make their own mistakes that they will either learn from ot not, but that is their path, not ours. We can't even judge ourselves. Who knows what mistakes we need to make in order to learn the lessons we came here to learn? And if we learn them, how are we to judge what we had to go through to come into the light of understanding?" (303).

Wise. It seems extraordinarily difficult, but it makes sense. I just find that even ceasing the act of judging oneself is really hard. I find that I am my toughest critic. How can we silence that tough inner voice of criticism? Who knows, but it's different for each person; that I do know.

What are your thoughts on learning, or about judgment here at the end? How could one do this, or do you agree with these quotations?

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